Mayo Moments

Sunday, 24 June 2012

Kindness of Strangers

I have always believed that everything happens for a reason. From every experience you receive at least one life lesson.  The biggest lesson I have received in the last month is about the kindness of strangers.  I know I touched on it in a previous post, but it truly has been a mind blowing, jaw dropping, eyes popping out of my head, emotional roller coaster.  

Do you remember the game Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon?  Well, what we have been experiencing lately is Six Degrees of Leah Balint.  It was through those degrees of separation that today's amazing events occured.
Today was the 2nd Annual Alivia's Rainbows Lemonade Sale.  Alivia's Rainbows is a charity started by Craig and Chantal Vanderklei in memory of their beautiful daughter who passed away from cancer. This charity helps support local pediatric oncology patients and their families with off-setting costs that may be a burden for families going through a difficult time.

This year, Craig and Chantal Vanderklei and the rest of the Alivia's Rainbows team very generously offered to share the proceeds of the Lemonade Sale with Leah.The Vanderkleis are close friends with the Tessiers.  The Tessiers are close friends with our family.

Today Kris Tessier,chose to spend her birthday holding a charity fundraiser. She and her family had spread flyers around the neighbourhood, the schools, spread the word among friends and team mates. They set up a table in their driveway, some comfy chairs for chatting, emptied out the lemonade freezer section at the local grocery store and settled down to sell some lemonade.  Well they didn't just sell some lemonade, they sold LOTS of lemonade to some very very generous and kindhearted people.  Just as people at the garage sale gave more than they had to, or stopped by just to donate, people came for no other reason than to make a donation.  They made time in their very busy days to drive out of their way to make a donation for two little girls that many have never even met!

And can you believe, that today our fundraising thermometer jumped by $300 due to the Lemonade Sale!  Thank you to everyone that came out to enjoy some yummy lemonade and great conversation.  Leah and our entire family greatly appreciate it!  To the Tessier and Vanderkleis families, I can not say thank you enough.

In another fabulous example of Six Degrees....a father of a friend of a daughter of my friend came to the sale. He was already familiar with Leah's situation, he had already read the blog (thank you )  and he came with one purpose in mind.  You see, earlier, he too was sick and searching for a diagnosis without luck.  He too had decided that the Mayo Clinic was going to be his chance for a diagnosis.  Amazingly, before he made the trip, he found the answers he needed.  Even more amazing, he and his family decided to donate the money he had put aside his trip to Leah!   I don't have the words I need to make you understand how grateful we are to this family.  When I received the news this afternoon, I was just like the people you see on TV...I was crying and my hands were shaking and I was speechless.  To the "M" family, please know we will pay this kindness forward in as many ways as we can.  Your generosity will never be forgotten. 

So kind readers, your life lesson of the day is to never underestimate the kindness of strangers.  Whether they be separated from you by 2, 6 or 60 degrees, their kindness will always surprise you!

1 comment:

  1. This is a beautiful story. Feel free to spread the message on the kindness of strangers by posting this story on :)